From the Principal
From the Principal
So much has happened in the last fortnight. For many in our community, the aftermath of the hail storm has been very difficult. Damaged homes and cars, loss of belongings, homes being declared unliveable and the lack of alternative accommodation in the area has really taken its toll. Moving home is stressful in itself, but many also face uncertainty. Please be assured that I do understand this struggle and students from affected families will be welcome at the College regardless of whether they have the correct uniform or equipment. We will do what we can to help.
Many listeners to 97.3FM will have heard the fabulous interview with Mr Allan Yates, our Head of Senior Years. Allan was nominated for the 97.3FM’s Brisbane’s Teacher of the Year Award. This is a wonderful achievement and we congratulate Allan on his nomination. You can listen to the interview with Mr Yates below.
The Covid-19 pandemic has forced us to change the way we hold our end-of-year events. The difficulty we face in trying to organise these, is the everchanging Covid roadmaps. Inevitably, people are disappointed when these events change. Please understand that the College has the best interests of the students at heart and we will always try to offer what we can whilst complying with the restrictions in place.
There are two significant College events next week. Speech Day on Tuesday 17 November and Year 12 Graduation on Friday 20 November. Both these events are restricted, however they will be recorded and made available to our College Community.
Our Year 12 students have been an outstanding cohort this year. I have been impressed with how they embraced the many challenges that have come their way. They have been tremendous leaders of the College, setting a very high standard for others to follow. Next week will see their final days at the College and we will bid them a fond farewell. We do hope they return to visit as Old Collegians.
My best wishes
From the Chaplain
We all need support after a natural disaster, and this can be much harder for adults and children that have never experienced a major disaster before. It can be especially challenging and difficult for children to express and articulate their concerns and fears.
Instead children can display any of the following:
- Sleep difficulties
- Being hyper-alert for signs of danger
- Displaying behaviour often expected of a younger child eg tantrums
As parents we have the longing to protect our children from the emotional aftermath and physical effects. If as a parent, you are experiencing a natural disaster for the first time with your children it is important to remember the following four things when building up your children’s emotional resilience.
- Look after your own mental health – remember it is just like flight attendant advising you to place the oxygen mask on yourself first before assisting someone else. You will be no use to anyone if you are not ok. Managing your own feelings of fear and frustration before you can help your young person respond.
- Let you children express their feelings – It’s normal for children to feel some shock and distress after a natural disaster. Those feelings will normally resolve themselves over time. Find a balance about talking about the situation as too much may be problematic.
- Put media coverage in context – disasters attack media coverage. Take time to let your children know that natural disasters are rare, and because they don’t happen often that is why the media coverage can be excessive.
- Be prepared to answer questions and explain what’s happened – it can be difficult for children to understand what has happened and they will tend to ask questions about what has happened numerous times! So be prepared to answer their questions honestly and stick to the facts.
Getting professional help – if after 2-3 months symptoms associated with your child’s distress are not reducing then seek help. For most children, the distress associated with a natural disaster will resolve with time.
This book called ‘Birdie and the Cyclone’ is a lovely book to read with your child and is available as an online resource in many languages. This Birdie’s Tree Resource was developed by Children’s Health Queensland to help infants and children understand and cope with natural disasters. More information is available on the website link at the bottom of this article.
Additional resources available include:
Children’s Health Queensland Government Website – can provide more information
Please remember that myself and our College Psychologist Kishwar are available to assist our students. Please email us on either email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org
Blessings, Reverend Erika
Compassionate Lord, we pray for those who have been devastated by recent natural disaster. Surround them with our prayer of strength. Bless them and heal their memories of trauma and devastation. Bless those that are doing everything that they can to assist and help those in need at this time in repairing our Greater Springfield Community. We give You all praise and glory forever, Lord, and know that even in the darkest hours, You are always with us. Amen.